The Secrets of the Mangroves of Cairns - Down Under Tours

The Secrets of the Mangroves of Cairns

December 21, 2017

Many of us have heard of mangroves; but, do you know what they are and what they do? A visit to Cairns offers you the perfect opportunity to find out.

What are mangroves?

Mangroves are trees and plants that thrive in coastal saltmarsh areas. They are essential to the ecology of Far North Queensland. They protect the wildlife of the coastal region from being damaged by the ocean, and at the same time prevent pollutants from the land being washed out into the ocean. Thanks to mangroves, the wildlife of the land and the ocean can co-exist harmoniously side by side.

Photo Credit: Rob and Stephanie Levy

Mangrove forests also supply essential food, shelter and breeding grounds for a wide variety of marine life, birds and even some mammals. Mangroves and salt marshes play a vital role in protecting many endangered species by providing them with the natural habitat they need in order to survive.

In addition, the fruit of some mangroves can be eaten by humans and is widely used in traditional medicines for everything from skin complaints to headaches!

What makes the mangroves of Cairns so special?

Mangroves can be found in coastal areas in many parts of the world but the climate and landscape of Cairns provide the perfect conditions that mangroves need to grow. The mangroves of Far North Queensland are some of the tallest and oldest in the whole of Australia. They offer visitors an excellent opportunity to spot an extensive variety of native wildlife.

Cairns is also home to some endangered species of mangrove, such as the orange mangrove. It was thought there were only 200 orange mangroves living in the whole world. This was, until the recent discovery of 50 trees growing on the estuary of Trinity Inlet instantly increased that number by 20 percent!

Protecting our mangroves

The importance of mangroves and saltmarshes has led to projects being established in Cairns that are dedicated to their conservation. One of these is the Jack Barnes Bicentennial Mangrove Boardwalk, which was set up by marine scientists in 1998. This fascinating and informative experience helps visitors to learn about the vital roles tropical mangroves and salt marshes play in the ecology of Far North Queensland.

The Boardwalk offers you the chance to get close to the nature and wildlife of the area while discovering how the plants and animals here have adapted to the environment. You’ll also get to take in some stunning views over the treetops, with Little Barron Creek at the northern end and Swampy Creek to the south.

Discover the mangroves of Cairns with Down Under Tours

Indigenous Australians have been teaching their children about the importance of mangroves and saltmarshes for many centuries. Today, thanks to the rise of eco-tourism, these fascinating habitats are contributing to the environmental enjoyment and education of people from all over the world.

These diverse plants and the environments they inhabit are an essential part of the Cairns experience. Down Under Tours offers a variety of ways for you to explore the mangrove forests and salt marshes of Cairns to the full. Click here or call +617 4047 9097 for more information and to book your tour.

If you’re looking for more things to do in Cairns, like Cape Tribulation Tours, Kuranda Tours, or other Cairns Tours, just click to our home page to start finding your ultimate North Queensland adventure.